Q&A pet photography advice updates + live twitter chat on Monday

Just wanted to let my photographer followers know that I will be updating the Q&A page of this blog on Monday with 10 new answers to 10 new questions asked by other photographers. If you have a question that isn’t already on the list, feel free to ask it here as a comment and I’ll add it to the Q&A page on Monday.

Also, I will be doing a live Q&A chat through Twitter on Monday afternoon, so if you’d like some real-time advice on pet photography that I can squeeze into a 140 character answer, follow me at twitter call sign @cowbelly, and feel free to ask away! In terms of timing, go ahead and just jump on whenever you are free. I’ll answer questions until later that night. Hope to ‘see’ some of you on Monday!

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17 thoughts on “Q&A pet photography advice updates + live twitter chat on Monday

  1. Thanks for answering my question. I can’t even begin to explain to you how influential your work has been for me, a newbie amateur pet photog who photographs pets as a fun hobby at the moment. I have much to learn! So thanks again for all your expertise. 🙂

  2. thanks for sharing sooo much information on your Q&A. Your so talented and your willingness to help an aspiring pet photographer is appreciated!

  3. So excited you are updating the Q&A! :mrgreen:

    I would still love an answer to the question I had emailed you a while ago…. How do you know when you are “ready” to begin selling your photos? Not so much in the business aspect of things, but the quality of the photos you are taking. When others love the photos you take? When you feel personally ready?


    Any tips you could share on SEO? Do you think flash sites are a big no-no for photographers?

  4. First of all, love your work and thank you for sharing!

    What do the owners do while you photograph? Do they stand there and watch? Do you involve them in the shoot?

    How do you engage the dogs in play and still be able to focus your camera for clear shots? What do you do with a dog that won’t engage with you?


  5. Could you give us an example of your “client flow”? In other-words how you move from start to finish through your clients. From the initial phone call on to maybe a pre-meeting then the shoot and so on. I’m trying to figure out how best to approach this and determine which areas are the most important. Thanks Jamie, and Christina!

  6. I would like a source for learning how to produce albums and press printed books so I can add that product to what I offer my clients. I’m not sure where to start.

  7. Do you ever feel photographer’s block? As a former journalist, I know it can happen for a writer. I was wondering if it ever happens to you. For instance, if you ever engage in a shoot and you feel a little off creatively. If so, how do you overcome that?

  8. ….and do you ask clients to exercise their dogs before the shoot? I know they should have SOME energy during the shoot but some have TOO much! Lately that has been a problem for me, especially when the client has two dogs and wants a photo of them together. Sorry I’m “hogging” up all of the comment space!!

  9. Okay, another question…how do you feel about renting booth space at animal related events to get exposure. Did that work for you?

    Thanks again!

  10. Hi Jamie!!

    Can you give some advice on posting to blogs/facebook/flickr? How do you keep each item separate and fresh, and how do you determine what to put on each site? I would think that posting my latest blog post on my company Facebook page is easy, but then where is the incentive for someone to follow both if it’s the same information?

    Can you give more specifics about marketing? For example, did you go into gourmet pet food stores, groomers, vets, etc. and introduce yourself and ask to leave postcards? And/or did you mail postcards to those places? And do you find the regular sized or the over-sized postcards work best?

    Finally (and I’m sure I’ll think of more questions before Monday!) Can you go over again some ideas on how to get displays up in retail spaces? Do you pay the stores, offer incentives, get them for free?

    Thanks for doing this for all of us that follow you, Jamie!!! 🙂

  11. Hi Jamie – Great idea! Here’s my question: Do you focus your sales efforts toward selling a “wall portrait” similar to what a family portrait studio would do, or do you focus on album or book sales similar to what a wedding photog would do? Or do you approach your products in a completely different way altogether?


  12. Do you think choosing a niche market has helped or hurt your business? Do you think aspiring pet photographers should specialize so much when they’re first starting out? Why did you choose to shoot only pets?

    One more question, which may have been answered already (it has been a while since I read the whole Photographer Q&A) – Which do you use most often: auto focus or manual focus? Why?

    Thank you!

  13. Session questions – How long do your sessions last? Who is doing the primary interaction with the pet – you, your assistant? How much interaction does the pet owner have?

    And 1 more, if I can…:)

    Other than charitable marketing with humane society, etc. what are some other good marketing avenues?

  14. I have a question. As a new photographer I have run into this a few times already. Do you give friends discounts on sessions/prints/etc? I’m sure as you know we need to make money some how but sometimes it seems like they expect you to offer to photograph their pet/s for a discounted price. What’s your opinion on that?

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